After a couple of months of bombast, lawyers and spokespeople for President Trump appear to be trying to lower the temperature on the Russia investigation — talking more respectfully about special counsel Bob Mueller, laying off Attorney General Sessions, and making noises about cooperation:
Outside experts say the shift is both revealing and necessary:
Be smart: Whatever his lawyers and spokespeople say, what will matter is what Trump says — and he has shown he's willing to change course with any whim or tweet.
"Wall Street regulators have imposed far lower penalties in the first six months of Donald Trump's presidency than they did during the first six months of 2016," according to a Wall Street Journal front-pager sure to (rightfully so) become an instant talking point for Dems:
P.S. Glass half full ... Lead story of Financial Times: "Financial institutions have paid more than $150bn in fines in the US relating to the credit crisis, passing a significant milestone a decade after it became clear American subprime woes had become a global problem." (Subscription)
Steve Rattner puts Trump economic claims in context with a clicky series of his famous charts for MSNBC's "Morning Joe." This one caught our eye:
"Trump has talked a lot about a resurgence of confidence. And it's true that several measures of optimism – particularly among business, which would be the principal beneficiary of his policies — turned up after his election. But at least one key measure — consumer expectations — has been dropping since February (along with his public opinion approval ratings.)"
"Despite a veneer of California cool, the sharp dichotomy between progressive and conservative voices nation-wide is just as present in Silicon Valley as anywhere else," USA Today's Elizabeth Weise and Jon Swartz write from S.F. in the paper's banner story:
Recode executive editor Kara Swisher has the full texts of Google's response and the original doc: "Google recently announced a new head of diversity, just as it has had to deal with a controversial 3,000-word internal memo sent across the company by an employee."
"It contains a series of what I can only describe as sexist twaddle, wrapped in the undeserved protection of free speech. (Hey bros who don't agree, that's just my opinion, so you'll have to take it because ... First Amendment and all!)"
Tesla's mainstream electric Model 3 appears to be powered by a battery about 11% smaller than the tiniest offered for its showcase luxury Model S, according to Axios Future Editor Steve Levine, who wrote the book on the role of batteries in geopolitics ("Powerhouse: America, China, and the Great Battery War"):
Speaker Paul Ryan, sensing angst back home in Wisconsin, to AP, re passing legislation, with tax reform as the top priority:
Bloomberg charts the rise of an activist investor who "doesn't worry about his tough reputation. He sees it as a selling point":
"As central banks start to wean markets off the stimulus they've injected into the global economy, many money managers say they're preparing for a bumpier ride ahead," AP's Stan Choe writes in a story calling this the "most boring market in decades":
The former alliance of Soviet satellites is name-checked in the fourth graf of this big-art story at the top of the N.Y. Times front page, "U.S. Army Dusts Off Cold War-Era Playbook," by Eric Schmitt at the Novo Selo Training Range, a major base in Bulgaria used by NATO nations:
N.Y. Times Quote of the Day ... Lt. Gen. Frederick B. Hodges, head of United States Army forces in Europe, on Putin: "He's going to be around for a long time. He's coup-proof."
"Don't watch 'Game of Thrones'? Mondays can be irritating" — From WashPost Style front, by Maia Silber:
Many workers have long felt excluded when office chatter turns to sports they don't follow. But now it's the competition for the Iron Throne, not the Super Bowl ...
While popular TV shows are often topics of conversation in the workplace, "Game of Thrones" seems to hit a sweet spot: It has high ratings, the past two Emmys for best drama and a complex plot that inspires endless conspiracy theories, plus it airs in the summer, when there's not much else on. So with every conversation revolving around the goings-on of Westeros, those who don't watch "Game of Thrones" are left out of the loop. ...
Modupeh Jahamaliah wears headphones Monday mornings, when her colleagues at the D.C. public relations firm Kglobal rehash the previous night's plot twists. ... HBO's blockbuster series has shattered records — with 16.1 million viewers across platforms, this season's first episode was the most-watched season premiere in HBO history.
Get with it! Recap of last night's Season 7, Episode 4: "The Spoils of War."